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Deported researcher denied appeal over a 10-year sentence in Rwanda

asylum seekers july - UDI familyThe Norwegian Department of Immigration (UDI). Photo Norway Today Media

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A former researcher from the University of Bergen, who was forcibly sent to Rwanda in 2016, has been denied his appeal over a ten-year sentence in Rwanda.

Joseph Nkusi came to Norway from Rwanda in 2009 and ran an opposition blog when he was in Norway. Seven years later he was expelled after his asylum application was rejected in Norway.

The Directorate of Immigration, the Immigration Board (UNE) and the Oslo District Court concluded that he was not in danger once he was sent back to his home country.

“This is a terribly tragic case. Here, mistakes have been made by the Directorate of Immigration, the Immigration Board and the District Court, which have major consequences for Nkusi and his family. It is now natural that Norway does everything in Norway’s power to help him and his family, as far as possible,” says the man’s lawyer Brynjulf Risnes, to Aftenposten.

Nkusi was arrested the same day he arrived in Rwanda. In 2018, he was sentenced to ten years in prison for regime-critical articles he wrote in Norway.

After the sentence, his asylum case was reviewed and reassessed by UNE. It ended with UNE granting Nkusi protection in Norway on October 29, 2018. He was granted a work and residence permit and the right to be reunited with the family, the newspaper writes.

Risnes told Aftenposten that he would now ask the Foreign Ministry to use diplomatic channels to intervene in the case and thus try to reduce the penalty or get Nkusi back to Norway.

© NTB Scanpix / #Norway Today

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